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12 gifts for the tech obsessed

12 Guys of Christmas: The Techie

To the inexperienced, the words “techie” and “guy” seem synonymous. Sure, most guys do like technology these days — but like does not true a techie make. So while this list can absolutely be applied to any modern man, its real target is the hardcore gadget nut. The one who scours the blogs and refreshes…

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12 gifts for the aesthete

12 Guys of Christmas: The Designer

They speak to Adobe software like a petulant brother, organize bookshelves by color for “fun” and fill photo albums with typefaces. They find calm through arranging objects in right angles (whether it’s their property or not) and take pleasure knowing that they’ll always notice the details we philistines ignore. “They” are designers of course, that…

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12 gifts for the traveler

12 Guys of Christmas: The Globetrotter

These guys seem to have racked up a bigger airline status than Clooney and more time on the road than Kerouac. They call ports of call home and know how to navigate the TSA, border checkpoints and a nasty comped bar hangover with ease. Whether a job takes them to exotic first-world destinations or their…

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A bag Mr. Eastwood would love

Kata Revolver 8 PI Camera Bag

Dropping a beloved L-Series lens is akin to a photographer’s very own “fiscal cliff”. Sometimes, though, your on-the-go shooting style demands more than an iPhone and insta-edit. For bold times like these, the Kata Revolver 8 PI Camera Bag ($250) gives serious shooters with a bundle of gear the upper hand against gravity’s nasty game…

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Your current case is on the edge of extinction

Dodo Case Customizer Tool

Seems like you can customize just about anything these days. From kicks to cars, people want to be their own clever, intellectual, trendy (or not), unique snowflake — just like everyone else. Which is why we’re shocked someone didn’t think of the Dodo Case Customizer Tool ($80+) sooner. Fueling your one-off narcissism, Dodo Case enables…

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Stay in touch with the future

Logitech Wireless Rechargeable Touchpad T650

Windows 8 is coming, and if Microsoft has its way, PC users will be transitioning seamlessly back and forth between their desktop and tablets like they’re in some kind of Ridley Scott daydream; that is, as long as they own the right accessories. For those unfamiliar with Windows 8, the traditional desktop experience you know…

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Strapping

Joby 3-Way Camera Strap

You’ve got a doozie of an SLR and a couple lenses that cost more than a semester of college tuition, but your camera strap looks like it was yanked off a pair of Fisher-Price binoculars. Luckily for you, Joby, who’s made a name for themselves with their line of versatile camera tripods, has decided to…

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Bust a cap in your hood

Hoocap

Any photographer worth his stop bath will tell you that a proper lens hood is one of the most important tools of the trade. The problem is that lenses still require a lens cap to stay scratch and smudge free when traveling. The Hoocap ($49) lens cap is the clever solution photogs have been waiting…

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Up Where We Belong

Twelve South HiRise

If your iMac needs a pedestal upgrade from its current almanac/cigar box, the Twelve South HiRise ($80) is a more than suitable replacement. Providing proper height adjustment for your display, the HiRise is perfect for people who like their necks and don’t enjoy performing impersonations of Marty Feldman in Young Frankenstein. The HiRise’s internal metal…

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Antonio Banderas may not approve

TMDtouch Zorro Macsk

There’s a reason museums have signs asking patrons not to touch the art. It’s basic human nature: we like to touch stuff, priceless works of self expression be damned. The TMDtouch Zorro Macsk ($199) delivers the touch capability we’ve been craving on our iMacs, at a reasonable price, and with very little hackery. The Zorro…

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A better music box

Apogee Quartet

The Apogee Quartet ($1,295) is a USB audio interface that provides Macs and their parent’s-basement-squatting masters with studio-grade chops. Connection-wise, four combo XLR and 1/4” analog inputs — complete with world-class mic preamps capable of capturing click-free transitions from a vast gain range of 0-75dB — and eight digital inputs can accomodate a burgeoning boy…

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Tower of power

Exogear Exovolt Plus

Portable battery power for your gear is always practical but obviously very finite — and, usually, pretty dull looking. The Exogear Exovolt Plus stackable battery tackles both downsides by providing unlimited expandability and a look that seems to tap into Cupertino’s sleek monochromatic simplicity. The 5,200mA Lithium Polymer Battery Main Unit ($90) provides power on…

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Roughing it just got easier

In-Depth: BioLite CampStove

Earlier this year, we told you about the innovative new BioLite CampStove, which promised to not only cook your wieners but also charge your smartphone using only firewood. This summer, I had a chance to take one camping to see how it worked in the wild. I took it on a road trip to northern…

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Scrub a dub, keyboard in a tub

Logitech Washable Keyboard

Keyboards are underrated and mistreated. Face it: the thing your fingers are resting next to right now is absolutely filthy — you disgusting pig, you. Luckily for you, the Logitech Washable Keyboard ($40) can be cleansed of its grime, just like a stack of dirty dishes. Using UV coating and laser-printed symbols for durability, the…

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One small step for man…

Leap Motion 3D Sensor

Steve Jobs said touch screens would work “like magic” and revolutionize how we control computing devices. He was right, but a small start-up in San Francisco is taking that idea to the next level dimension. Leap Motion 3D Sensor ($70) is an iPod-sized USB device that creates an eight cubic foot 3D motion field to…

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Data farm, on the fly

Drobo Mini Storage Drive

If you’re not backing up your data, you’ll regret it. Cloud storage solutions like Dropbox provide some piece of mind, but they’ve yet to fully keep pace with today’s ever-growing media libraries. The Drobo Mini ($649+) is a new personal and portable storage solution for mobile professionals that holds up to 3TB of data in…

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Fixing the bad kind of flashy

MacFrames

The iMac’s design is unquestionably stunning, but it’s hard to marvel too long at a screen that’s burning your corneas with glare. The MacFrame ($49+) protects you from needing your grandma’s glaucoma shades while you surf the web. Luckily, glare is actually caused by the screen’s glass cover and not the glass LCD monitor screen…

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Drive a wedge

Microsoft Wedge Mobile Keyboard & Mouse

Leaning into the October launch of tablet-ready Windows 8, Microsoft’s Wedge Mobile Keyboard and Mouse saves you from sacrificing screen real estate for data input. The two compact tools are both Bluetooth-enabled and designed to match smoothly with the company’s operating system. The keyboard comes with Hotkeys set to take full advantage of Windows 8…

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Conceal and carry

TwelveSouth BackPack 2

Can a simple sliver of steel transform your desk organization? It just might. Harnessing the power of fulcrum and gravity, the TwelveSouth BackPack 2 ($35) transforms your otherwise inert iMac or Cinema Display arm into a convenient parking spot for your Apple devices or peripherals. With vertical support pegs, built-in cable management, and multiple mounting…

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With great power comes great storage options

Kickstarter: Riseful RollPro III

People have filmed some insane stuff since the GoPro first came out. The indestructible camera that could can be used in seemingly limitless ways, which means a seemingly limitless collection of cases and accessories. Kind of difficult to shoot that video you planned of yourself parasailing into a gorge while on a flame-engulfed surfboard with…

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Bandwidth Bandmaster

Western Digital My Net N900 HD Router

The days of needing a router just to catch up on captioned cat photos have long since gone the way of the beeper. Today, everything from video calling and media streaming, to automatic “cloud” backups and farming gold in mythical lands is funneled through home broadband — not just on desktops or laptops, but on…

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Protection of the highest order

Kickstarter: TAKTIK iPhone Case

If you could roll all of RoboCop’s awesome features — immense protection, smarts, reliability, durability, prime directives — into an iPhone case, what you’d end up with is the TAKTIK ($75+). Designed by Chicago industrial designer Scott Wilson + Minimal, of LUNATIK Strap fame, the TAKTIK follows in its predecessors roots through a Kickstarter project…

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Burrito ex machina

Burritob0t

The closure of El Bulli + the rise of 3D digital printing = Opportunity! Bereft foodies now have common cause with CAD manufacturers — to rejoice in the dementedly creative mind of one NYU grad student who has prototyped the Burritob0t, a 3D printer for making, yep, burritos. Inspired by a frustration over the paucity…

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The Hulk to your Smartphone's Bruce Banner

Clamcase Clambook

If your penchant for gaming, music and web surfing through your smartphone is a 10/10, then you might want to put a tickler in your calendar for this holiday season in anticipation of the Clamcase Clambook. With nary a hint of Macbook Air (ahem), the Clambook is as thin as the day is long and…

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Your SLR Sherpa

ONA Camps Bay Camera and Laptop Backpack

Finding interesting ways to carry around our camera gear never gets old. ONA’s useful camera bag inserts are a great item for casual photographers looking for the best way to stash a camera in their luggage. The brand’s new Camps Bay ($430) backpack, however, is a full-service camera and laptop carrier geared toward the pros….

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Get strapped

DSPTCH Camera Sling Strap

Dial down the touristy vibe on your next photo hunt, home or abroad, with a DSPTCH Camera Sling Strap ($48). Designed and made in San Francisco by a photographer — a man quite deft with the lens himself — is made using mil-spec commercial grade nylon webbing and outfitted with a uni-loop connector to ensure…

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Click-ish

Logitech Cube

Traveling and giving presentations for work is stressful enough, which is why perennial mouse-maker Logitech has created the Cube. The palm-sized businessman’s friend is a combination mouse/presenter that lightens the load of even the most burdened road warrior. Thanks to touch surface scrolling, the Cube acts as a traditional mouse when placed on a flat…

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Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Hard Drive

Wiebetech Drive eRazer Ultra

If you’re getting rid of an old computer, be very careful about the data that you leave behind on the hard drive. Having someone steal your social security and credit card numbers would be bad enough, but think of what would happen if someone got a look at something much worse — like a glance…

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A different kind of iPad

Alugraphics Flexpad

From outcries that they’re paying too much for current technology to being badged as label-driven sheep, Apple fan boys take a lot of flack for their devotion. But regardless of whether or not you agree with any of the admonitions, one thing has never been in doubt –Apple products are gorgeous. For those of you…

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Style Pick: Billykirk Hand-Stitched Leather Laptop Sleeves

Over the years, we’ve raved about Billykirk’s products and founders, and their latest laptop sleeves ($219+) reaffirms our love. It’s a classic Billykirk piece – blending chic with toughness, and elegance with durability. Featuring hand-stitched Horween leather, a Chicago asset since 1905, this sleeve exudes rugged class. In any boardroom or meeting it sends a…